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Bluetooth Weather Lamp

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Picture of Bluetooth Weather Lamp
This was a 2 hour project I whipped up in order to learn how to use a new Bluetooth LE 4.0 module I picked up at redbearlab.com, called a BLE Mini.

I've since thought of several much simpler ways (and more dependable) to accomplish the same thing, such as simply lighting 3 LEDs behind weather icon cut-out masks instead of the whole servo thing... but again, I wanted to learn to run the servo too. So there it is.

 
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Step 1: The Dirty Bits

Before we dig in, a parts list, for those who like lists:

1. One Arduino "Whatever" (Uno, Mega, Leonardo, Lovitz, etc).
2. One small bread board (included in above kit)
3. One BLE Mini Bluetooth module from redbearlab.com
4. One Philips 12 volt 3 watt LED porcelain bulb
5. One small servo
6. One 12 volt power supply (at least 1 amp)
6. One lamp with shade
7. Assorted: aluminum sheet (soda can), wire, cardboard, tape, blade/scissors, zip ties

8. Lastly, you'll need an iPhone and an Apple developer account, or some other method of communicating with the Bluetooth module.

Red Bear Lab has an example app on the app store called "BLE Arduino". You can control the servo from here, but you'll likely want to modify and build your own version of the code which pulls in weather for your area. If this is too much to take on for some, I totally understand. You can just as well turn this project into a clever shadow clock or other indicator (insert imagination here).

I'd release the app I've modified onto the app store, but honestly, I'm afraid it would get poor reviews. ;)

Step 2: Down to the Wires

Picture of Down to the Wires
I'll apologize now for the poor manor in which I describe the wiring and connections. Eventually I'll learn to use some nice schematic software. Also, my wire color choices are horrible, but this was a fast prototype. I know ground should be cauliflower blue...

From my count, you'll need 9 wires. Mouse over each in the picture for a description of where they are going to end up.
Cool project!

I was wanting to replicate this, but am having trouble trying to sync weather with the BLE app for iPhone. Could you provide any help?

Also, you mentioned:
"The Arduino program (pasted at end of Instructable) is always listening to the Bluetooth module."
Is there anyway you can post your Arduino code? I'm hitting a wall trying to get mine to work. Thank you :)
dnagarajan4 months ago
I get the title! :D
cool project! My BLEMini is due on my doorstep for next Wednesday and I'm gonna make this as my first project. Only quirk being I'll be using Android (luckily, I'll be getting an Android 4.3 almost magically and it supports BLE).
This perfectly illustrates the problem I have finding a use for my Arduino. That BLE module is $35. Combine that with the cost of the Arduino and the fact that you need an iOS device... I just end up doing all my projects with a RaspberryPi and a normal $6 USB dongle. It's capability is way overkill, but it's so much cheaper to use commodity hardware.
bob30307 months ago
Thanks for the info. I think I might get one of those Bluetooth devices for a project I'm working on. Thanks for posting!
Lforador9 months ago
Good idea this is awesome
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